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Ex-New City Little League Treasurer Pleads Guilty in $400,000 Theft

Joyce Bidnick accepts plea deal that could result in six-month to one-year jail sentence for second-degree grand larceny

of New City plead guilty today to second-degree grand larceny in connection with the theft of more than $400,000 from the

Bidnick, who was the league's treasurer from 2003 to 2011, appeared in Rockland County Court and accepted a plea deal that could result in her serving a one-year county jail term or six months in county jail and five years probation when she is sentenced on July 20.

"She admitted she stole the money," said Bidnick’s attorney, Bruce Klein of the Bronx.

Klein said his client did not want a jury trial. Bidnick, 58, had to decide by today to accept a plea deal or go to a jury trial.

Assistant District Attorney Gary Lee Heavner said Bidnick diverted an amount of checks and cash that was “substantially over $400,000” between April 1, 2006 and April 30, 2011 from the Little League. He said $230,000 was repaid during that time span. 

“While the theft was ongoing, money was being paid back,” Klein said.

Additionally, $100,000 more has been repaid since April 2011 and Klein will give the Little League a $20,000 check on Thursday.

Heavner said there would be further review to determine whether there is still an outstanding sum of money to be repaid.  He said it could be zero or another $70,000.

“In essence, the $120,000 might be the full restitution,” Heavner said.

“She’s trying to do what she can to make New City Little League whole,” Klein said. “We believe we can show there was an additional amount of money paid back during the years we are asking them to give us credit for.”

He said they are working to show that $70,000 to $80,000 more was repaid. If the district attorney’s office determines more money must be repaid, that will be reimbursed over a period of time.

Klein said he has submitted information to the court explaining what was going on at the time of the theft and that may be brought up at the July sentencing.

“She acknowledges that she’s guilty,” he said. “She’s sorry for her conduct. She has expressed remorse from the beginning.”

Lon Hofstein, president of the New City Little League, said the league appreciated the work of the District Attorney’s Office and its efforts to recoup the money owed to the organization. He expressed appreciation for the understanding of vendors and umpires who agreed to continue working and providing services until the league could pay them.

“I reached out to every vendor personally,” he said. “They were very good, supportive. The umpires were very supportive.” 

Another action took place immediately after the discovery of the disappearance of the funds.

“We put new checks and balances in place,” said Hofstein. “It is done by a committee.”

Judge Charles Apotheker spoke directly to the two members of the New City Little League, who attended the hearing.  He pointed out the need for more oversight and a CPA to review their financial accounts.

“I can’t understand for the life of me how you allowed this to happen,” he said. “This should be a lesson for your organization for all organizations in Rockland County. I’m just concerned it had gone on for so long.”

Erik Moore May 29, 2012 at 01:46 PM
I have followed the news reports carefully and still do not understand why everyone is so hell-bent on crucifying Mr. Bidnick. The DA surely would have charged him if he had found ANY impropriety or mismanaged funds. As far as his not noticing his wife's "glove" - until we spend a night in their home, we have no idea what goes on there. I don't know if I would notice my wife doing the same - remember Mrs. Bidnick didn't have the money all at once, she repaid at the same time. She has admitted her guilt, is paying the money back and is willing to accept the consequences. Judging her by a mug shot? Probably not the best idea, nor the fairest. I can totally understand being angered by her actions, but she is attempting to do the right thing now. Isn't that what's important? None of us can change the past, but we are in control of what we do today; and it seems to me, she is doing just that.
Pam May 29, 2012 at 05:45 PM
Ya'all should find more productive ways to spend your time. Go volunteer for an organization!
Billy May 30, 2012 at 04:39 PM
Paul - perhaps you should get more involved with the league. If you did, you'd know that the Zukor 2 scoreboard was hit by a line drive and shorted part of it. Has nothing to do with the getting a ladder and changing lightbulbs. Additionally, the league has over 50 teams - so I can imagine it is not too easy to schedule. Games have two hour time limits for a reason. Perhaps if you looked at it from a league view as opposed to your own selfish view, you'd see that things run pretty well. If you disagree, then you should volunteer your time and help make it better. It don't get involved, your complaints mean nothing.
John May 31, 2012 at 03:23 PM
Just to through some other facts out there!!! She has admitted what she did, but then you have her husband who is a Past Grand Master for NYS Masons who has now been expelled for what??? MISAPPROPRIATION OF FUNDS!!!! What a shocker. As a Masonic Fraternity they have not released any details nor to my knowledge have they brought charges against him. So, if you think that they just did what they had to do and they are so sweet and nice you are sadly mistaken they would have done anything to collect another title in Masonry. They deserve what they get; they have brought Masonry into a new light, which is not in a good fashion. All the good that Masonry does they have brought nothing but shame to the organization. She and he need to pay for what they have done!!!!!!!
Bill F May 31, 2012 at 06:54 PM
John, if they haven't "released any details", how do you know what actually went on? Simply put, you do not. Neal Bidnick is a good man and a good Mason. The men who know him, and his character, remain unconvinced and are waiting for this situation to be resolved and his name cleared. That his wife broke the law opened the door for this heinous miscarriage of justice and I have no doubt he will be vindicated. You are correct in {{one}} thing - she admitted what she did, and is attempting to make it right.

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